Every child, it seems to me, has least a wisp of poetry inside them – I would maintain far more. In fact, in some ways children can seem more poetic than adults, because they express themselves so naturally, vibrantly and musically. I suppose it comes of being fresh, clear-headed, fired-up about life, and free from the restraints and distractions that come with the years.
But to express themselves most effectively through poetry, children need to be equipped with some writing tools, such as a reasonable breadth of vocabulary, some dexterity with the words they know, and an inkling of how words can be swapped about, twisted, built on, lined up and presented to take their ideas even further and make their poems ring.
Such skills will be assets for literacy in general, of course, and for life in general too, so the more opportunities they have to develop them, the better.
So I’ve started posting ideas for simple language games, idea-sparkers and poetry writing approaches on my other website, poems4pockets.blogspot.co.uk . I’ve also listed my poetry frames there, with a few examples, available to order, purchase and receive online.
Some of my poetry-writing suggestions involve creepy-crawlies, which is also one of my workshop themes this term – a fascinating subject to explore!